Talk Therapy: How To Move On

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Talk Therapy: The Pain

Ending the relationship that you thought was going to last is crushing. It is devastating that it can cause someone depression. There are several reasons why relationships end, and one of the most common is infidelity. A person whom you thought was supposed to make you happy is now the person who taught you not to trust anyone.

During a bad breakup, it is essential that a person has a stable support system. Friends should be available each time you need to talk about emotions because dealing with it alone is difficult. Someone has to talk you up whenever your thoughts are pulling you down.

If you feel that your breakup is causing you more than just weeks of sleepless nights and it’s affecting your behavior, maybe you need a few therapeutic talk sessions with friends. You have the power not to let your past relationship cause you depression. Talk therapy is available for people who choose to seek the help of a professional who is knowledgeable in managing the pain the bad breakup brings.

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“In this kind of [talk] therapy, clients get an opportunity to explore and broaden the range of feelings that they are comfortable with. This exploratory process not only helps a person understand subtle and often unnoticed emotions but also helps them begin to manage strong and often uncomfortable feelings more effectively,” wrote F. Diane Barth, LCSW.

Yes, your friends love you, but they can get tired of the drama in the long run. They can also be subjective in giving tall advice, or they may avoid saying things they think can hurt you but are essential in the process of healing and moving on. A talk therapy expert, on the other hand, knows the psychology of breakups and the importance of truth in moving on.

Talk Therapy Benefits

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    • Self-Discovery

Talk therapy helps you know yourself. If you have been with someone for so long, you tend to adopt his hobbies or talking mannerisms, and a breakup brings up the question of what or who you are without your partner. Do you still have your identity, or do you lose an understanding of your personal aspirations and goals?

Building a life together with your partner is normal. Once the relationship ends, you have the opportunity to realize what you want in life without the influence of your partner.

“Let the [talk] therapist guide you,” wrote John M Grohol, PsyD. “A talk therapist’s main job is to act as a guide in your recovery and healing process. Talk therapists are not there to necessarily give you all the answers, but help you find your own way to those answers.”

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    • Therapy: The Optimism

During the breakup, you need to remain positive. It is unwise to linger to harmful thoughts such as regrets, self-blame, hatred, hopelessness and such. The talk therapist knows how to bring out the emotions, deal with negative thoughts, and get rid of them.

Talking therapy is beneficial in helping you get the drive you need to start all over. Talk therapy aids you in managing pain, and at the same time, channeling it in the most productive way and trying to restart your life.

    • Forgiveness

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The key to letting go and moving on is forgiveness. Rubin Khoddam, PhD, wrote, “The act of forgiving is one of realizing that holding onto the anger and resentment no longer carries the same weight on us. Instead of seeing something as good or bad, we begin to see things with full acceptance, as they are, however that is.”

    • Talk Therapy: The Acceptance

Though it takes time to heal, a talk therapist aids you in getting through the process. Talk therapy makes you realize the imperfections of life, and that somehow, we should all learn the value of acceptance. Talk therapy emphasizes the binding capacity of humans to make mistakes and to be capable of learning forgiveness.

Finding the person you get to share your life with can be the primary goal of every person on this planet, and ending the relationship can be overwhelming and destructive to the mind. Talk therapy is the best option for positively moving on (without bitterness and hatred).

Talk to a therapist now.

Parental Alienation

Being a good parent is a difficult task. What triggers alienation?

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When do you consider your actions to be one of alienation parenting? How do parents get alienated? Does counseling help avoid alienation as a parent? Let’s find out more about counseling for alienation.

Introduction

What is parental alienation? When does a parent know that he is showing signs of alienation? Does counseling help with alienation?

Learn more about parental alienation.

Parental alienation basically happens during a negatively done divorce where the child strongly takes the side of one parent (usually custodial). Parental alienation may mean that one parent isolates the child from the other parent. Parental alienation leads to hostility between the child and the victimized parent. It should never happen to any parent.

The Facts

The previous happiness I once felt so good is now turning into a series of confusions, doubts, and heartaches. That is because I somehow feel that parental alienation is currently happening. How did I know?

Question #1

When does parental alienation happen?

Contact Resistance From Children

Our understanding children offered us a solution to our family problem about spending time with whom. That is how we all came up with a solution of dividing everyone equally to each parent so that each of us can still have time to bond with one another. But a few weeks after the parental divorce, all my kids manifest contact refusal or resistance, which is one major sign of parental alienation. I noticed the changes caused by parental alienation because every time I tried calling them from their dad’s home, my kids would often make these weird excuses that left me, their parent, hanging. Some of those are “I’m not finished eating,” “I’m too busy on my homework,” “I’m not feeling okay right now,” etc.

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Unseen Parental Efforts

The whole situation of this marriage fall and divorce got into my kids smoothly. In fact, I didn’t entirely hear them complain about their parents getting into a divorce. I assumed that my children are well- knowledgeable and mentally and emotionally intelligent enough to handle the family pressure, especially from parents. However, again, after a couple of weeks from the divorce, my children changed so suddenly in the way they act with me as a parent.  My efforts were put to vain and clearly, it was parental alienation without my kids knowing about what they’re doing.

Confused With Blaming-Like Actions 

When it feels like you, as a parent, are being blamed for a situation, that is parental alienation.

I know the struggle to keep up with my family’s needs and balance them with my career and being a parent. But with all these issues with our kids, I felt like I was the parent who made the whole situation complicated. This part of the parental alienation really did hurt me. With all these pent-up parenting confusions, I went straight and asked them about what they thought of me as a parent. But the children shrug it off. Now I am more confused about the parent-children relationship because I felt like I pushed them away with that unnecessary question from me as a parent.

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Conclusion

The things that I observed pushed me to read more about parental alienation, which also confirmed my suspicions that I was suffering from parental alienation.

I felt like my kids do not consider me a parent who provides safety, availability, care, and love. The children do not treat me the same way as a parent like before this whole broken family thing took place. I know there is no proof to support that overthought idea, but as a mother, I can feel something is off, and I hope that parents who go through a divorce won’t have to suffer from alienation. Alienation hurts and it is not fair.

I don’t blame them but rather I blame my husband for using them as a weapon against me and making me suffer from parental alienation. I urge every parent going through a bad divorce right now to read about parental alienation before alienation happens to you. Don’t let parental alienation ruin your relationship with your children. Learn more about parental alienation today.

 

Common Strategies Used By Parental Alienator As Per Told By A Counselor

Marital relationships are not perfect. Every couple deals with different issues and reasons for separation. It is a known fact that when the two decided to call it quits, some things in their lives that they invested together should completely end up with shared rights and responsibilities. In this particular case, the most common thing separated parents deal with “rights and responsibilities” is the children.

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When the marriage didn’t end up that good, the usual response of one parent is to alienate the children from the other parent. One deliberately or unknowingly behaves differently to convince the children to go against the target parent to disrupt their parent-child relationships.

Parental alienation usually comes from unresolved feelings, particularly bitterness and anger towards the target one. It gets used to taking advantage of the situation and the children. An alienating parent alienates children without realizing long-term harm. But how does the alienating parent do that? Here are some of their common strategies.

Badmouthing – Alienating parent usually badmouths about the other parent behind their back. That is because they want to put out their frustrations on the target parent due to the personal impact that marital separation had brought them. Parental alienators use unkind words to describe the other parent so that children avoid getting attached to the other party. Badmouthing is commonly effective as it changes children and alienated parent’s communication course.

Staged Absence – An alienating parent is good at staging the target parent’s absence to manipulate the children. They often create an environment where there are no displayed photos and other things related to the alienated parent. Alienating parent avoids talking about the target parent so that children can cut the desire to know more about the other side. It becomes an effective strategy as children focused more on engaging with the alienating parent and eventually builds disgust over the other. The kids will eventually and willingly ignore the other parent as they would not see them much of the important part of their lives.

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Limiting Contact – One easiest way of controlling the children is by limiting their contacts to their alienated parent. Usually, the alienating parent would impose rules limiting the kids from seeing or communicating with the other parent. Limiting contact is a strategy that often results in children’s emotional issues since most of them would develop the urge to contact the other party. The strategy is somewhat inconvincible at first. But once the alienated parent established a good basis to stop communication, children will soon get used to the flow.

Imposing Danger – Since most alienating parents are bitter and feeling betrayed, they would try and get back to their exes by using the kids. They would tell them that the target parent does not love anymore. And every time the target parent would try and contact the children, the alienating parent would hinder it by creating an impression that the targeted parent will cause danger. In some scenarios, the alienating parent would tell the kids that the other parent will hurt them to get revenge. It would create an emotional detachment, and children will soon voluntarily move away from the target parent.

Forcing To Choose – In an almost everyday scenario of separated parents, there is always the pressure to convince the best children. In case the alienated parents lose their winning point, they often force the children to choose. It is a strategy that often makes the alienating parents more favorable than the other because they take advantage of their time spent with the children and use it as an asset. Alienating parents would force the child to reject or ignore the target parent and use the “I’m the one who’s here” card.

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Imposing Fear – In some unfortunate instances where the issue between parents is out of hand, they intend to destroy each other by imposing fear on their children. An alienator would often scare the kids by telling them that they would leave or die if the kids choose the other parent over them. And since the kids couldn’t afford to handle their emotions, they would immediately choose the alienating parent because their presence has become more powerful than the other. It is a strategy that usually traumatizes children as the imposed fear grows overboard sometimes.

Asking Kids To Spy – Most alienating parents start with their parental alienation by asking the children to spy on the other parent. It somehow makes the children think that the action is validating the target parent’s wrongdoing despite no solid evidence. In this situation, alienating parents discretely teach the children to lie and keep secrets from the other parent to slowly remove the parent-children association. It becomes an effective alienating strategy because kids sooner or later judge their targeted parent as they focused more on their parent’s negative aspects.

 

Divorce Counseling

Divorce Counseling – Do You Need It?

What help does divorce counseling offer to couples who are on the brink of ending their marriage? Is divorce counseling necessary? Does it save your marriage if you opt for divorce counseling?

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My husband, James, and I had been married for 20 years when I found out about his extramarital affair with his former secretary (which is a definite reason for divorce counseling). I overheard his friends joking about it while they were fixing a car in the garage. Then, I heard my husband shushing them because I might be nearby.

When I confronted my husband, he tried to deny it at first. When I refused to talk to him for hours, James finally admitted to his mistake and told me that it was just one time during the early years of our marriage.

James’ alibi only angered me further, though. I questioned every word that came out of his mouth. For one, why would he go drinking alone with his secretary when he was already married, and he knew that she liked him? Guys would only drink with the opposite sex alone when they had other motives most of the time. That time, I wasn’t even considering divorce counseling. It was only divorce in my head.

I thanked God that I learned about it when our two children were already in college. They were both technically adults, making it easier for me to decide to divorce my husband that night and move to the house that I bought for myself before getting married.

I asked my best friend, a divorce lawyer, to officially end my marriage. I told her about what James did and how I felt that was unforgivable. She whipped up the divorce documents immediately and sent them to my husband because I did not want to see him again. Our kids were also aware of our situation at that point. Although they were obviously unhappy about it, they supported my decision because they knew that their father messed up.

Divorce Counseling Proceedings

My friend and divorce lawyer already warned me that my husband might not agree with the divorce at once. She was right – he contested it and filed a divorce counter-affidavit. He practically said that it was silly to throw away a 20-year marriage over one mistake that happened decades ago.

The nerve of that guy to downplay the issue! But since he filed his own papers, I had no choice but to see him during the first divorce hearing.

The divorce hearing was emotionally exhausting because I had to listen to James recall what happened back then, especially during his affair. It became even more exhausting when the judge ordered us to get divorce counseling before deciding how we would move forward.

Was divorce counseling really necessary?

What do divorce counseling experts do?

Divorce counselors typically help married couples on the verge of divorcing decide if they genuinely want to part ways for good. They also help the husband and wife realize the cause of their impending divorce and possibly resolve them to save their marriage. If it’s unsalvageable, divorce counselors step in to hold divorce counseling sessions to ensure that the divorcing couple can separate peacefully and prepare them mentally and emotionally for the divorce.

What are the signs that you should get a divorce?

  • Lack of Happiness: The first sign is a mutual feeling of unhappiness.
  • Negative Interactions: If you can only notice the awful things that your partner does – and vice versa – it’s possible that you need to separate soon and perhaps do divorce counseling.
  • Avoidance: Avoiding the person you are supposed to cherish for the rest of your life is not a sign of a healthy relationship. You want to avoid your spouse even during divorce counseling sessions.
  • Lack of Sex: Physical intimacy is as important as emotional intimacy. Without sex in your relationship for no valid reason at all, it may mean that your love for each other has become platonic.

What is the meaning of marriage counseling?

Marriage counseling refers to a type of counseling that has been designed for couples who cannot resolve their marital problems in their town. The marriage counselor practically acts as a mediator between the two until they reach an agreement.

How do you know when your marriage is over?

You will know that your marriage is over when your spouse does something, and you cannot forgive them. Forgiveness is vital to keep the relationship going. If you stay together without forgiving each other, your life will be miserable. If you plan on getting a divorce, it would be more organized to go through divorce counseling.

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What questions are asked in marriage therapy?

  • What are your biggest marital issues? – You and your partner can lay out every problem that you think your marriage has.
  • When did the issues manifest? – This question aims to see your awareness of the problem. After all, some individuals are oblivious and do not know how to answer it.
  • How can you improve your marriage? – The marriage counselor will not dictate how you can improve your marriage. Instead, the mental health professional will help you realize your problems’ roots and think of what you should do with your marriage. If this doesn’t work still, you might consider divorce counseling.

How can I regain my marriage? 

This question might come up before you think about divorce counseling, which means your marriage might still have a chance.

  • Control Your Critical Side: One issue that people complain about is their partner’s ability to pinpoint their mistakes all the time. It may not always lead to divorce and divorce counseling, but it undoubtedly makes the marriage dry and almost platonic. If you don’t want divorce or counseling, you need to count your spouse’s positive aspects and let your critical side take the backseat.
  • Focus on What You Love About Them: Everyone has flaws – even your spouse – and it may be impossible for them to fix those during counseling. If you want to avoid divorce, you need to stop counting their faults and think of what you love most about them.
  • Create New Experiences Together: This definitely helps avoid divorce and divorce counseling! Relationships typically fall through the cracks when couples settle into a dull routine. To regain your marriage, you need to be spontaneous and try new activities together.
  • Nurture and Support Each Other’s Interests: Being married does not entail that you should have the same interests in life. It is best to acknowledge what your partner loves to do as a person and support them no matter what.
  • Talk: Often, a small problem intensifies when couples do not communicate with each other well. If you can learn to talk as much as possible, that will be beneficial for your relationship. Don’t just talk when you’re already going through divorce counseling!
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Can a toxic marriage be saved from counseling for divorce? 

Yes, a toxic marriage can be saved and you can be spared from divorce counseling, but it cannot happen overnight or when only one-half of the relationship wants it. Both parties should make an effort to work through their marital and personal issues during counseling before thinking of saving their relationship.

How do you trust someone again after they hurt you? 

Trusting someone again after getting hurt starts with forgiveness. You cannot fully trust someone if you are still holding a grudge against them or recalling the awful things they did to you.

Similarly, the other person must work hard to earn your trust. If they continue in their disastrous path, you may never be able to trust them again. Here, to regain trust, you don’t need divorce counseling but rather marriage counseling.

Is it better to divorce than stay in an unhappy marriage? 

Some people prefer to stay in an unhappy marriage because of the kids, but a divorce will always be better than that. Divorce is better because the kids will not see their parents fighting or barely talking or forcing themselves to act happy when they are around. That cannot be good for child development.

The divorce will also benefit the adults’ mental health since they no longer need to live under the same roof with someone they don’t love anymore. Divorce will allow them to find a new love and find happiness.

Do people regret divorce?

Yes, many people tend to regret divorce during counseling, even though it is for the best. That is especially true for divorced individuals who cannot find new love afterward. That’s why counselors recommend divorce counseling before filing for divorce.

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Final Thoughts

During divorce counseling, the divorce counselor mostly counseled us with the questions we were supposed to ask each other. The more my husband confessed about his infidelity, though, the more I realized that I could no longer be with him.

I could say the divorce counseling worked because my husband finally accepted that I could not be with his lying ass anymore. There was no custody battle involved after divorce’s counseling because the kids were already adults, making our divorce and counseling peaceful. Before the divorce, we agreed to get together during the kids’ milestones, such as their college graduations, birthdays, and even weddings in the future.

Divorce Counseling

Frequently Asked Questions About Postpartum Depression

I always thought that postpartum depression is a myth. I kept telling myself that it is not true, despite the known research and studies I read online and seen on the news. I guess I was too stubborn to think about it because I do not entirely care about that particular health issue. I am confident that as long as I take care of myself and focus more on healthy habits, I am good. I can be positive to manage any stressors regardless of the physical, emotional, and mental causes. But, damn, I was wrong.

This couple of weeks seems to be the worst time of my life. Honestly, I can’t even think about anything because I am too focused on these uncertain thoughts. I was supposed to be happy because I recently gave birth to a healthy baby boy. But it felt different. It felt weird that I don’t feel like myself at all. I am not sad, disappointed, or angry about the whole experience, though. But I am not that happy either. With that mixture of emotions, I realized that I struggled with something I didn’t expect: postpartum depression.

With my current situation, all I can ask is help. I genuinely want to identify what I am going through because I now realized that I miscalculated the effects of this mental health problem. I tried to understand some of the specific information about postpartum depression through these frequently asked questions. Let me know if these are something all of us can rely upon.

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What are the causes of postpartum? 

A climactic drop in hormones in your body after childbirth, particularly estrogen and progesterone, can potentially contribute to postpartum depression. Even those other hormones produced by the thyroid gland that continues to drop sharply can trigger the mental health issue as well. Thus, when this progresses, it can leave you feeling sluggish, tired, and depressed. It can make you emotionally and mentally unstable.

 How can you prevent postpartum? 

There are certain things you can consider to prevent having postpartum depression. However, you need to realize that some methods that work well with others do not guarantee the full results you imagine. It would be beneficial if you educated yourself about the impacts of the condition. That way, you can prepare yourself well for the birth of your child. Always let your feelings known and avoid making major life changes during or even right after childbirth.

 Is PPD curable? 

Yes, postpartum depression or PPD is a severe mental illness that entails professional assistance. Most women’s signs and symptoms of depression tend to stay from 3 to 6 months after they begin and even last longer than that. But despite its overall damage to an individual’s overall health, it is highly treatable with medication and psychotherapy. But note. Some medications and treatments may show different results. Therefore, an individual should not expect the same outcome as others, for some therapies and medications work depending on the severity of an individual’s condition.

 Is PPD genetic? 

PPD or postpartum depression is a severe, relatively common disorder that affects women who give birth. Usually, it has lifelong implications for the affected individual and her family. Although some anecdotal evidence points out that PPD can be inherited, epidemiological evidence show that circumstances are high regardless of if the mental condition comes from genetic factors.

 Can a woman go crazy after giving birth? 

Unfortunately, yes. There are cases that new moms experience postpartum psychosis. Though it is a rare but serious mental health illness, it still affects women soon after having a baby. Some will experience mild mood changes and might consider it a “baby blues” that usually only lasts for a few days. However, postpartum psychosis is different as it impairs women’s mental health severely that they may find themselves unable to control their emotions. In worst cases, some new moms engage with self-inflicting harm and suicide due to the condition.

 How long are you considered postpartum? 

The postpartum period starts with the first six weeks after a mother gave birth. This period is a crucial time that requires all sorts of care for the mother and her baby. It is essential to stay focused on getting emotionally, mentally, and physically better during this time.

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 Is it normal to cry a lot after having a baby? 

A lot of new moms experience strong emotions right after childbirth. Feeling overwhelmed and crying a lot in the days is normal. But be mindful. If the condition becomes unable to understand and struggles with coping with emotional health, it is best to consult professional help. Spend time to consider and check it out for postpartum depression. Do not ignore the symptoms.

 What is a postpartum woman? 

The postpartum period begins immediately after childbirth. That is because the mother’s body, including her uterus size and hormone levels, returns to a non-pregnant condition. There will be some mild emotional and mental dysfunctions, but it usually does not last long. Unfortunately, for some individuals, their postpartum recovery won’t be just a few days. In some cases, their so-called “baby-blues” tend to stick a bit longer, which escalates into a mental health disorder.

 How does pregnancy affect mental health? 

Pregnancy affects women’s mental health, as it makes them feel more vulnerable and anxious. Sometimes, their condition may develop into severe cases of depression. Pregnancy requires a lot of overall wellness and balance. Thus, if expecting moms are not getting enough stability in their emotional and physical health due to their pregnancy needs, the possibility of damaging mental health is very high.

 Is PPD a mental illness? 

Yes. PPD or postpartum depression is a mental illness that usually affects women. Some of its severe conditions cause delusions or strange beliefs, hyperactivity, rapid mood swings, and decreased need for or inability to sleep. Also, it promotes Paranoia and suspiciousness, Difficulty communicating at times, extreme agitations and anger, and Hallucinations. It is significantly important to seek professional help when more of these symptoms occur.

 Is PPD serious? 

For some women, their PPD or postpartum depression is mild, that after a few days, they recover from emotional and mental health. However, some new moms experience symptoms a few days after delivery that lasts for months. Women who experience postpartum depression will experience good and bad days.

 What are good anxiety and depression medication?

Good anxiety and depression medication are antidepressants because they are shown to be effective. Doctors and licensed medical experts most widely prescribe these. SSRIs include Prozac, Lexapro, Paxil, Zoloft, and Celexa.

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Insight

I understand that not all new moms deal with postpartum depression, and not all of them can handle it. Like me, I am still trying to figure out how to win back my emotional and mental state because I badly need it right now. But honestly, I am having a rough time with that. But of course, I need to try harder for the sake of my baby, family, and myself.

A friendly reminder to all the new moms out there, please be careful with your mental health. Be well but not too confident about your current psychological state. You might struggle with a lot of complications when you ignore the negative signs and symptoms because chances are. Immediately seek professional help and do not rely on self-diagnosis.

 

Couples Therapy Or Couples Counseling

Couples therapy is a process where couples are taught to understand and love each other better through counseling. Do you think couples counseling or therapy works? Know more about couples counseling to save and cherish your relationship.

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Before Couples Counseling

I came from a six-year relationship before I met John. My breakup with my ex was still fresh at the time, so I did not want to date anyone. However, my friends insisted that I should be on the rebound already to show my ex what he lost for being a two-timing jerk. After days of bugging, I finally gave in and let them drag me to a bar.

Exactly three months since John and I hooked up, though, I found out I was pregnant. There was no question about my unborn child’s paternity, considering I had only slept with John since then. My only problem was that I did not know how he would react. After all, we did not expect it. We weren’t even in an exclusive relationship.

When I told John about my pregnancy, his face glowed, and he pumped his fist in the air. The man I thought would be devastated about the news turned out to be happier than any future father I had seen. Then, to my surprise, John knelt on one knee and presented a ring to me.

Two Years Later – The Time We Realized We Need Couples Counseling

We realized that we would benefit from couples counseling just two years after.

The first thing John and I realized as couples after the honeymoon was that we knew so little about each other. For instance, he had an awful habit of leaving the toilet seat up, while I sometimes snored loudly. Despite that, we had a baby on the way, and we were willing to look past our indifferences to have a happy family (this was apparently what couples counseling was for).

When Luke came into our lives, I thought everything would still go smoothly between John and me. He said I did not need to work because he had a great job and income. Besides, looking after a baby was a full-time job, especially when the baby’s about to reach their terrible twos.

The first time that John and I argued for a long time was when he came home from work without food on the table. My excuse was that I had to do laundry and take care of Luke, but John asked me about what’s so hard with ordering pizza, at least. That caused me to sleep in the baby’s room that night, but then John fetched me around midnight and said sorry. Nonetheless, after that, we continued to have arguments almost every day about little things.

I got fed up one day and asked John if he wanted to split because I could not handle another argument with him. His demeanor changed, and he hugged me, but I said we could not go forward unless we settled our differences through couples counseling. Couples therapy did improve our relationship at that time.

What is the success rate of couples counseling? Does couples counseling really work?

Counseling has seen up to an 80% success rate over the years.

How can I get free couples counseling?

You can avail free couples counseling by going to non-profit organizations or churches. In case you want to do online couples counseling, some platforms offer a free trial.

What is the best therapy for couples? Is couples counseling effective for everybody?

Couples counseling is the best therapy for two individuals who cannot deal with their relationship issues independently.

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How do I find a couples counselor?

Often, at least one person in your circle can recommend a couples counselor. If you cannot get a referral for a couples counseling expert, you can visit the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) website and use their locator feature to look for one in your area. Similarly, churches are typically linked to a couples counselor, given that engaged couples need to go through pre-marriage counseling.

What is the difference between marriage counseling and couples therapy/couples counseling?

Marriage counseling is short-term counseling that couples get when new issues pop up and affect their relationship. Meanwhile, couples counseling or therapy can deal with every problem that the husband and wife have had since their relationship started.

What is the Gottman Method?

The Gottman method is a couples therapy technique that therapists use to thoroughly assess the couple’s relationship and determine what solutions may suit them. Gottman’s method is one of the most effective couples counseling.

Is it okay for married couples to sleep in separate rooms? Does this situation need couples counseling?

Yes, it is perfectly okay for married couples to sleep in separate rooms. In truth, some therapists may recommend it in some circumstances.

A few positive tips for couples counseling to consider:

How can I be more positive in a relationship?

  • Accept that you and your partner are two different people who cannot always like the same things. The more you embrace each other’s uniqueness, the more your relationship will flourish.
  • When your partner tells you something, don’t just nod and agree with them absentmindedly. You need to practice active listening to know that you care about their thoughts, experiences, and emotions.
  • Pour all your attention to your partner whenever you are together. Time is one of the most precious gifts that can strengthen any relationship. If you cannot give it to your partner, your relationship may be in jeopardy.
  • In case you and your partner seem to have a misunderstanding all the time, you must learn how to choose your words and communicate better. Otherwise, you may end up separating.
  • Welcome positive and negative comments from each other – that’s how you will know the things you should stop or keep on doing. Still, the feedback session should occur respectfully, considering you are doing it to improve your relationship and not spite one another.
  • Trust is another beautiful gift. Assuming your partner has not given you any reason to doubt their love for you, you should show them more trust.

The following tips that couples counseling should carefully know and reflect upon to avoid negativity:

How can negativity kill a relationship?

Negativity can kill a relationship by making problems more prominent than they should be.

How do you know if you’re not happy in a relationship?

  • You cannot talk to your partner without noticing their bad qualities or getting angry at them.
  • You often do not feel like coming home, knowing that your partner will be there.
  • You do not want to have sex with your partner. Even if you do, it feels like a chore than something you enjoy.
  • Your priorities are everything except for your partner.
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How do you stop overthinking in a relationship?

  • If you do not understand what your partner’s words mean, try not to draw your conclusions and just ask them directly. Doing the former will only make you sad and paranoid.
  • Realize that your relationship does not revolve around you. Your partner has as many needs as you do, and it is only healthy for them to prioritize themselves over you sometimes.
  • Considering your relationship is still hanging in the air, you need to distract yourself. Go on a trip, hike with friends, or even date other people if that will keep you from overthinking.

Final Thoughts – The Gems that Couples Counseling Brought Us

John and I had fruitful couples counseling. We found a great couples counselor through our friends. I was initially embarrassed to go to the counselor’s clinic, but the counselor assured me that there’s no harm in saving our relationship. We went through a few sessions, and after each one, we felt closer than ever.

It had been 10 years since we went to couples counseling, and we became advocates of this treatment to our friends and family due to how much it helped save our marriage.

How Single Moms Can Get Through Pregnancy Without Destroying Their Mental Health

Being a mother is perhaps every girl’s lifelong dream. It often shows in the way they roleplay with dolls and treat them as their children. Some will not even let an hour pass without the dolls in their arms and throw a fit if the parents take them away. 

Despite that, when these girls turn into women, they realize that it is not always easy to find a man they can build a family with. Many of them end up as single parents, especially if their partner bails on them or is too messed up to keep.

In case you become a single mother before giving birth, though, it is understandable how it may harshly affect your mental health. You are at the most vulnerable phase of your life; the family you wished to give your child is already broken before they even arrived. But as much as you may want to give up, you should: 

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Think About Your Unborn Child

The first thing that you should think about is the well-being of your unborn child. Many experts have stated that a baby could feel everything the mother feels when they’re in your womb. So, if you are restless, they become restless. When you are always crying and depressed, it may have an adverse effect on them. 

Because of that, you need to try to be happy all the time. Force yourself to feel that way if you must since the primary goal is to help your unborn kid develop healthily. If you need to watch many comedies or be around your loved ones or go on a trip, go for it. There should be no room for anything that may jeopardize your baby’s development. 

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Consider That Single Parenting Might Be Better For You

No woman wants to be a solo parent from the beginning – not even adoptive mothers. The need to have a partner in life strengthened when you created a new life with someone special. However, there are also instances when it is better to be single instead of coupling with your child’s father. 

The perfect example of that is what Jenna went through in the Waitress musical. Assuming you hadn’t seen the show when it was still on Broadway, you should know that she was a waitress with a verbally – and almost physically – abusive husband. When Jenna realized that she was pregnant, she felt so scared about it. It didn’t help that her good-for-nothing husband asked her not to love their baby more than him. Jenna waited until she was in the delivery room to tell her husband that she wanted him gone, but she did it anyway. 

I know a lot of women like Jenna in the world. And believe it or not, it is always more ideal to raise a child alone than to expose them to such toxic relationships. 

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Allow Your Loved Ones To Support You

A common reason why a pregnant woman may find it challenging to deal with singlehood was a lack of support from friends and family. That is especially true if they turned their back on their loved ones, only to be betrayed by the man they picked over the latter. Pride may also get in the way as they want to prove to everyone that their pregnancy is not a mistake.

Still, here’s a newsflash: not everyone is too evil to keep on taunting you after knowing what you are going through. Perhaps your family is upset because of what you have done to them. That’s okay; they have the right to feel that way. However, if you are scared of getting rejected by them when you wish to come home, there’s a high likelihood that it is a baseless fear.  

You need to believe that some people genuinely care about you and your baby, and all there is to do is to let them in your world. This way, being a single mother won’t feel too impossible anymore.

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Deal With Negative Thoughts Much Later

Are you still unable to get over your breakup with your unborn child’s father? Do you often lie awake at night and think about what has gone wrong in your relationship? 

Although I would typically recommend facing your problems head-on, it may not be suitable for pregnant mothers. As mentioned above, an unborn child can feel every emotion that the mom experiences. Dealing with negativity while your baby is still under the developmental stage in the womb may cause complications later. 

If you can wait to do that until your due date, that will be incredible for your child.

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Bottom Line

No one blames you for becoming a single mother during your pregnancy, whether you have chosen to be one or not. If anyone does that, pay zero attention to them because their comments will do nothing but mess with your head. Aside from being healthy, you need to be mentally stable so that you can prepare to be a mom and dad to your baby.

Good luck!

The Alienated Parent: Surviving The Challenges Of A Broken Family

 

 

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Surviving the challenges of being an alienated mom or dad is not easy at all. Keeping your rationality, albeit your children abandoning all your attempts at keeping in touch, is devastating, and trying to be sensible in the arena of the family court is truly challenging. How can you feel normal when your family is broken and you are alienated from your kids? Can life for you ever become sane again?

Below are some essential pieces of advice for parents who have to cope with the heartbreaking realm of parental alienation.

Surviving Amidst Parental Alienation

Move forward mentally and emotionally. Do not focus on the broken relationship that you had with your alienated child or children. Move past the bitterness and rage. Don’t punish yourself. Concentrate on finding positivity every single day. Get some activity going—exercise or volunteer in your community. Start writing. And when your day is just not going the way you want it to, pray the serenity prayer. There is immeasurable power in it.

When you are an embattled parent dealing with parental alienation, you must feel alone, depressed, and broken. And if you’re struggling like most alienated parents, you might have the same question for the various mental health professionals and everyone else who attempts to provide comfort and advice: How? Where do I begin? Is there a manual for this?

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Even the smartest advice for reliving connections with your alienated kid, such as regularly keeping in touch with your child through messages of love and care, would be pretty difficult. To make things worse, showing your outpouring love and acknowledgment to your child provides him with the courage he needs to keep his painful and unyielding position. He could say, “I can keep on treating you badly because I’m sure you adore me, and you’ll always think that it’s not my fault.” Keeping your sane self when a previously loved child does not accept your invitation or never talks to you on the phone is really tough work. Keeping the sanity in the world of the family courts is also tough, particularly if your ex-spouse does not pass up a chance to file legalities to prevent you from communicating with your child, eventually damaging your soul and your bank account.

Gather Positivity

One of the most effective coping strategies for parental alienation is likened to the saying about an individual who visits the doctor and tells him, “Doc, I get hurt when I do something like this,” and the doctor would always respond, “So why do you do that? Don’t do that!” For instance, it is a fact that you must keep on proving to your estranged child that you are the persistent loving parent that you were then and now. But there is nothing in the law that states you must confront your child’s hurtful rejection when things aren’t going your way, and the abandonment will really break you to pieces.

Rather, you can make a call to your child right after you’ve spoken to your boss who just made a compliment, or you get to finish a difficult project, or your favorite show featured the best actress. You still may get a no from your child, or he’ll hang up the phone and not talk to you, but it won’t hurt that much if you’ve already felt glad about something.

Change Your Mindset

If you’re depressed when you think about the days when you were bonding with your child, then you’ve got to change your mindset. There’s this woman I know who alters her negative thoughts with joyful recollections of her frequent trips to her doting grandmother. Often, she would get rid of negative memories by imagining that she is wading in the clear, blue waters. Regardless of where your thoughts will bring you, you may alter both your mindset and your whole day with these little mind vacations.

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In CBT, reorganizing your thoughts entails altering something negative that you usually recite in your mind into a more affirmative statement. Say, for instance, based on your present circumstance, you may recite this silently, “My child is angry at me, and he doesn’t love me anymore.” Try changing this statement to, “My kid does love me and wishes to be with me again. It’s just that he’s doing his best to survive something that is hurtful for him as much as it is hurtful for me.”

On other days, thought replacements won’t do you any good, and you feel that you are not able to overcome the devastation and sadness of parental alienation. Just don’t fight it but negotiate with yourself. Permit yourself to feel sad for a time – just for a time – like before the day ends, or before heading to sleep. As a substitute for allowing yourself to feel sad and mourn the failure of keeping your child, commit to doing something after the deadline that would make you feel much better.

The Takeaway

Ultimately, the best way to deal with parental alienation is to gain knowledge. Having a sufficient understanding of the subject will give you emotional strength and enable you to decide wisely for yourself and your child.

 

 

Parenting 101: Help Kids Cope During The Pandemic

This pandemic situation is the number one cause of stress and anxiety of most people right now. And the victim of these mental illnesses is not limited to adults only. Children and adolescence also experience a different level of stress and anxiety that they sometimes cannot handle. So in times like this, it is essential that we also help the children cope with this pandemic.

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As we are all aware, kids and adolescence thrive on structure and predictability. They are good at understanding what is already in front of them. That explains the process of learning from experience where adults receive first-hand information, and then pass it to the children. But in this pandemic situation, everyone is adjusting in their lives simultaneously. Thus, it becomes a turning point for children to step up and try their best to match other people’s coping ability. But it doesn’t have to be that way. As adults, we need to find a way to help the children during this crisis because we are responsible for their overall wellbeing.

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Preservation Of Some Routines

Understandably, there are limitations and strict safety protocols the children must follow. Of course, we don’t want anything wrong to happen to them. But to help kids cope, we must allow them to look at the situation differently. We must understand that even if we are now working our progress to the new normal, we still have to retain some of the kids’ usual routines. These include playing, learning, and socializing. That is because some of us parents are becoming overprotective of our children that we hinder them from being kids. It shouldn’t have to be that way. We should not allow our kids to live their lives with fear and worries all the time.

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Unnecessary Input Of Negativity

As parents, it is okay that we level up our concerns to our children. We have to remind them of the disadvantage of the situation. However, we must understand that the way we deliver the words can significantly impact their outlook on what’s happening around them. We must learn how to slowly discuss negative information to our kids so that they will not feel a certain amount of emotional weight on their chest. If we haven’t noticed, kids are critical thinkers. It is possible that they may feel scared because they can’t do anything. They might think that some of us adults can’t handle our overall wellbeing, what more can them? With that, we must often talk honestly with the children to avoid confusion.

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Do Not Allow Isolation

Children are typically terrified of everything. That is their nature because they understand the insufficient knowledge and experience they have compared to adults. Thus, they remain dependent on us during this pandemic. But some parents are not aware of the danger of allowing kids to be alone, especially in a situation like this. So as parents, we must be there for our children. We need to let them know that being alone in this situation is not going to help anyone. We must not make them feel that home quarantine is design to keep them away from other people. We need to explain that this whole social distancing protocol intends to save lives and not to influence isolation.

Yes, it will be difficult for children to manage their lives because of the sudden changes they have to deal with. But we can help them with their struggle. As parents, we can make their lives easier as long as we try and understand their mental and emotional needs during this time.

Why Parents Need To Be Present In Kids’ Formative Years

It has been an eye-opening experience to attend the Parental Involvement Conference 2019. I did not want to admit that at first, but that’s the truth. It is especially helpful for the parents of young children like myself, who do not have particular parenting styles yet.

One of the ideas that stuck with me is, “Parents need to be present during the little ones’ formative years.” Here’s why.

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Kids Learn The Best From Their Parents

Whenever people say that parents are the best teachers, I believe them. The reason is that they know their kids more than anyone else. They have an idea about their interests; they can develop learning materials that suit the children’s needs. And this role is crucial during their formative years.

Being Present Keeps You From Regretting The Lost Years

I have a friend who always left her young children at the care of her mother so that she could work full-time. Her husband abandoned them, and it was the only way to feed the family. But as the kids became a little older and closer to their grandmother than their mother, my friend regretted not being around during their formative years.

Can the lost times be brought back? Nope. All absentee parents can do at this point is to make sure that they are present now. 

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Your Presence Can Lower The Chances Of Kids Straying Away In The Future

It is common to find parents at preschools. Sometimes, it is because they volunteer to help the teachers deal with the kids. Other times, it is because the little ones refuse to study unless they can see their mom or dad. 

The latter indicates the children’s dependence on the parents. Even if some people frown upon babying them in such circumstances, your kids will only remember that you are there when they need you the most. Thus, the memory may prevent them from going astray in the future.

Final Thoughts

There is no doubt regarding a parent’s determination to ensure that your kids will never experience hunger or poverty. Some even go as far as working overseas to guarantee that. However, if possible, try to be a permanent part of their formative years so that they can develop naturally.